Vasudev of the City :The enduring legacy of Bharood
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The aim of this project is to understand the role of a folk theatre art form used for protest and critique over the period. The project deals with many factors that played a role in making the art form effective in its time and the change it has gone through to still be relevant today. Bharood, a 13th century Maharashtrian folk art form was a medium of protest and social critique which saints of those times used against caste discrimination, superstition and ritualism. And now it is being revived through live performances, regional television shows and Marathi films using currently relevant context to communicate their ideas. The project explores the factors that made the art form popular and effective amongst people like the use of local folk artists as a medium of communication, use of music, devotion and above all the social critique. How are those factors being used now? With the changing context, there is disposition of purpose and place. The art form which was performed as a form of bhakti has come to the theatres now. The fact that it is seen only as an art form, people giving more importance to the aesthetics of the art form. But its purpose was to use those elements of aesthetics to get a message through to the audience to make it more effective. Although Bharood is being used as both. There are people who bypass it and people who stand by it.